To pursue this strategy, they had to seriously downplay the virulent white supremacy of Hillary Clinton's main opponent, so now that that strategy has help to put a white supremacist regime in the White House, it is not surprising that they are downplaying that result, and this is pretty much what Ron Jacobs does in a counterpunch piece Wednesday titled The Missouri Compromise and General Kelly.
The title and timing tell us that this article is counterpunch's response to White House Chief of Staff John Kelly's message on Fox News Sunday to Trump's white nationalist base that he supports their basic views on the Civil War and slavery. He is telling the world, as if it again needs repeatings, that there is a white supremacist regime in the White House.
White supremacy was the unifying feature of the Trump candidacy from the moment he came down the escalator to call Mexicans rapists. It is now the key feature of the executive regime that candidacy has put in the White House. Virtually every question this White House has obsessed about, from immigration to banning Muslims, from fighting ISIS with tremendous loss of civilian life to confronting the Koreans with a threat of nuclear holocaust, from encouraging police to commit more Freddie Grey style killings, to demanding the firing of football players who take a knee to protest those killings, from calling a white mass murderer "deranged," to calling a Muslim one "an animal," from greatly escalating the US war on Africa, to dissing an African American Gold Star family and the African American congresswoman who came to its aid, and from seeing "good people" among the neo-Nazis and plainclothes Klansmen in Charlottesville, to seeing "honorable men" fighting to preserve slavery, this White House is committed to white supremacy in a way that has not been seen in living memory. One would think that even counterpunch could finally see that. Apparently not.
If Ron Jacobs was a Marxists, I would probably point out his error in "there is nothing moral about owning another human being" followed by "That truth is immutable." Marxists know ancient slavery, as practised by every civilized people as they emerged from primitive communism, was a necessary step in human development, unlike the slavery practised much latter under capitalism. Since he is not a Marxist, I'll let that go.
However, I can't be so forgiving about what sounds like a concession to one of Kelly's heroes, namely the claim the Robert E Lee was a man of honor because that is another piece of white supremacist mythology that must be disassembled and destroyed. Why does Jacob say "even if Lee was an honorable man?" He wasn't! Since clearly more education is needed on this, let me add to the stories I recalled in Dotard Trump's Chief of Staff preferred slavery to the Civil War!, that included the recounting how Lee personally whipped a girl when his slaver-whipper refused, this story about what a reporter found upon visiting Lee's plantation at the war's end:
An Inquirer reporter described the Lee slaves as "ragged, dirty, and the smallest nearly naked." Few had ever been off the plantation their entire life. "There were all sorts of darkies there," one soldier noted, "stalwart field hands, old worn out men … "Topsies" carrying buckets of water on their heads, strong-limbed boys, and little toddlers running around [barely clothed]." It is no wonder the Lee slaves "were a happy set of darkies when they learned that they were free."The first part of this counterpunch article indulges in a history lesson about the Missouri Compromise, which, in anycase, wasn't the compromise Kelly was talking about. This history of slavery barely touches upon legacy of racism it was intertwined with before it finally gets to the current situation:
The current attempts among various extremist elements to revive the ideology of the Nazis and of US slave-owners is testament to the need for white supremacy to be refuted. The fact that this ideology is being defended by two of the most powerful men in Washington, DC is some cause for alarm. Not only has Donald Trump tweeted out veiled support of the slavers’ heritage in his messages of support for Republican Ed Gillespie, Trump’s chief of staff, General Kelly recently told FoxNews reporter Laura Ingraham that the reason the US Civil War occurred was because there “was a lack of an ability to compromise.”Here he does touch upon the three important aspects of the current situation and how it may be the harbinger of a fascist seizure of state power, but he leaves them disjointed and impotent. Once again counterpunch is disarming us to the real danger.
On a related matter, a recent poll of US military members acknowledged the presence of white supremacists in all branches of the military.
The first group, often referred to as "Trump's base" is that ~30% of white Americans who are more or less consciously racist, even if they hide it in the current environment, along with a handful of non-white opportunists that are rewarded for helping them hide it. This is the group Trump speaks to. This is the essential ~30% Trump needs to seize power and start the terror, and this is the ~30% the "various extremist elements" Jacobs refers to, are working hard to agitate and organize. As the rally in Charlottesville, and our own experiences in Santa Monica have shown, they are having more success than we would like to admit and they enjoy the active support of the White House.
The second group is those "white supremacists in all branches of the military," to which I would add, white supremacists in all departments of police. So we have a strong base for a fascist/racist takeover in the armed organs of state power, supported by a sizable minority of the population. This was already the dangerous mix that existed in the United States before certain forces on the Left started giving backhanded support for a white supremacist takeover of the White House.
That is the problem we currently face. It is much more serious than "this ideology is being defended by two of the most powerful men in Washington, DC." More than a "cause for alarm," this threatening situation must become a call to action. Now that these fascists have more than one foot inside the door of state power, its going to take a lot more than weak words "for white supremacy to be refuted."
By Clay Claiborne
If you are in the area:
Join us for the this Sunday, 5 November 2017, for the November meeting of the Santa Monica Committee for Racial Justice at Virginia Avenue Park [2200 Virginia Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90404]. We will have both de-escalation training and safety training review at 4:30 pm. Our CRJ Singing Group will meet at 5 pm. We will all gather as we have done, on the South side of the Library. (FYI: This month, our guest singing group leader will be Linda Alvarez!) The works runs from 6 to 8:30 and is a potluck as always. Here is the info about the workshop. Please invite your friends! A panel discussion about issues > that contribute to mass incarceration in the U. S. and what is being done & > can be done in California and at the federal level to cut back on this > heavy, racially inequitable drain on our human and capital resources. > Panelists will include Jayda Rasberry who is working against the expansion > of jails & prisons, Santa Monica native & transitional advisor Bert Cole and > other voices of personal experience with the unjust system that leads to > mass incarceration"
Syria is the Paris Commune of the 21st Century!